"The best revenge is massive success" - Frank Sinatra
You have to think about this guys. We are going through a pandemic right now and typically when something horrible like this pandemic happens, we typically put all other feelings aside and work together to push through the situation at hand. But people still can’t even holster their racism during the pandemic... Ok, if you’ve been living under a rock and don’t know what I’m talking about or what happened, let me catch you up. So 25 year old Ahmaud Arbery was jogging and apparently looked into an empty house being built and then continued to keep jogging. Two men saw him jogging, a father and son, and they went to get their shotguns and proceeded to chase after Ahmaud because he “Fit the description” of someone in the area breaking into homes. Talk about teaching your son life lessons. Then they proceeded to chase Ahmaud and murder him. They murdered him. C’mon man. How can anyone rationalize chasing someone down with their son to kill someone. And on top of that this happened in February and no one was arrested. The cops said it was self-defense on the killer’s side. I watched the video and this hurts. I have a 21 year old brother, I have a son... I don’t know... I saw the video online and I don’t know. How do I tell my son that people will hate him because of his skin color?
This is an emotional situation...This sucks, now, I have to worry about me or my son jogging. Jogging...
So, I want to do something different today. I want to dedicate this post to Ahmaud Aubrey and his family. I also want to do something else. I want you to get mad. Today I want to talk to you about three things that this country has done to us as minorities to keep us oppressed and not growing. Those three things are:
No Financial Education in Schools
And The Ghetto or The hood
The objective here is for you to get mad, get mad and angry and then think about this quote by Frank Sinatra, who openly pushed for equality in this country. He said “The best revenge is massive success."
NO FINANCIAL EDUCATION IN SCHOOLS
I will try my best to not bring in opinions and just bring in the facts, but that is hard because some of this is upsetting and sometimes you can only assume. But based on fact, researchers at the Federal Reserve board and University of Wisconsin Maddison has concluded that teens that took personal mandated finance course had higher credit score, saved more, and were more financially successful. So why do we not have financial education in our schools? Here's a link to a TedTalk by a High School student Tanvee Patankar, which I urge you to check out. She is stating that personal financial education is a need in our schools, especially for our kids who are set up to fail if they don’t learn this information. Somehow this country or our states have decided that we need physical education, history, and even sex ed in our schools, but not personal financial education. Although, those classes are important it doesn’t make any sense why there is no personal financial education in our schools.
Now let’s talk about what that does to us as minorities. What it does to you and your family. We don’t have money, we don’t have inheritance left to us to help us in case we make bad financial decisions, and we clearly are not even guaranteed to make it to retirement. Those with means do not get as negatively impacted from this because they have the money to make mistakes to learn from. You don’t. Most of you us as parents and even our parents have to work two jobs and we have depended on the public education system to do right by our kids and teach them what they need to succeed. It’s so black and white. I took a philosophy class a few years ago and they spoke about how to truly determine what is right or wrong and there is no real way to determine it, but there was this one philosopher that had a great concept that I’ve always thought about. He recommended to take something, let’s say financial ed in schools, and ask yourself, if everyone in the world does the same thing, will the world be a better place or a worst off place. And if we taught personal finance in all schools everywhere, I feel that the world would indeed be a better place.
So now, what do you do? It sucks but, for whatever reason your country and state has decided that they don’t want to teach your kids financial education although it would be for the betterment of us and our community. What do you do? The answer is for you to get mad, get annoyed, get frustrated, and get revenge. Be successful, do what they don’t want you to do. Learn about personal finances yourself, read personal finance books, and listen to people who want you to succeed, invest, put money into retirement, and leave something for your children and their children and even more important than all of it, is to share the information with your neighbor and your friends. Learn what they don’t want you to learn. Get Revenge... Be Successful
If you haven’t heard this word before. Please familiarize yourself with it. Redlining is a system that was created to not allow you to purchase a home and keep you oppressed. The aftermath of this law, like slavery and concentration camps still affect us today. Redlining has resulted in the lack of school, funding, limitation of generational wealth, and keeping us in the ghettos which I’ll talk more about. I don’t have enough time to fully explain and dissect redlining so here's a video from a show called Adams Ruins everything. It’s a 6 minute MUST WATCH. In the video Adam explains to a white man how he didn’t get all that he has by himself. Redlining cause minorities to lose and fail while it uplifted the majority. All with the rule of creating a redline deciding where people cannot get government funded loans to purchase homes...Yes, there was a line that was created where whites could purchase home and minorities couldn’t, and that system, redlining, took us back a couple more centuries.
I will quote Adam Conover by saying “The fact that so many suburbs are mostly white is no accident. It’s a result of decades of racist federal policy that affect us to this day” Redlining is a racist housing policy from the Jim Crow era that stated that green properties were good and red properties were bad. There were polices that allowed homes in the green area to be easy and simple and in the red area no loans were available to buy homes. They purposely made the red areas the places where the majority of minorities lived. By federal law, only whites were allowed to purchase in the green areas. What that did, was build the generational wealth you see today. The homes whites purchase for $5,000 now are worth millions while minorities had nothing. This system is why we have urban areas that are easily ignored and even why our schools are not equally funded. Because the areas were segregated so were the schools. Schools in the redlined areas don’t get the same funding schools in green areas got and until this day we can see the results of that. Please please watch the video on my show notes and allow yourself to get mad. There is a system purposely created to set you up for failure.
So what do you do? It’s pretty simple, do what they don’t want you to do. Build your credit up, save, and purchase a home. The simple concept of purchasing a home his how they became extremely wealthy and is how you can become wealthy. Most of the Redlining policies has stopped and although we still see the affects today, you do not have the same hurdles to buy a home. I used my first home to buy another one and I used my second one to buy my third. My plan in future posts is to dig in more on how significant an investment in a home is, but please trust me. Stop renting and buy. Own. Your decision to buy a home will build generational wealth. I promise. Get mad, get even. Be successful!
THE GHETTO, THE HOOD, THE TRAP (OUR NEIGHBORHOODS)
Redlining has played a role in creating the ghetto, but it took years and laws, and hard work in making them what they are today. And I don’t mean that in a good way. There is limitation in growth, poor education, minimal funding in our neighborhoods. I’m not going to debated it’s factuality, but it has been said that Ronald Reagan allowed crack cocaine in the country, but his only stipulation was that it would be put in the ghetto’s an urban areas. Do your homework, look it up. Whether you feel it is true or not is irrelevant here though. The fact was that crack cocaine did hurt our communities in a very large way and once again, we still see the effects of it today, is not debatable.
There is a system around keeping you in this confined area, where they don’t want you to grow and they want you to stay comfortable and remain where you are. Look around, if you live in one of these urban areas, tell yourself that you deserve better than what you are given. Get mad that this environment of yours was purposely created to keep you oppressed. Here's another video about our ghetto’s if you want to check it out.
"I got rich, then gave, to me that’s a win win” - Jay-Z
Now, by no means I am saying that living in the hood is a death sentence and the worst thing in the world. It’s not, it truly made me who I am today. What I am saying is get mad and do something about it. If they want you to stay there, get out. But I don’t want to stop there. Jay-Z said this line that I think about all the time. “I got rich, then gave, to me that’s a win win”. So I’m not just saying to get out, I’m saying go back and help whoever else is there. Educate them, help them. Teach them how you got out, and even if you stay, stay, but make sure your children and the children around you are given the option to get out. Teach them about finance, teach them about buying homes. Because sometime we have to stay and make the sacrifice for the kids. Get mad at the system that was created to keep you in the hood and do what you have to do to get out. If they, whoever they may be, wants you to stay in the hood, get out. Your success is the best revenge.
Just like in Ahmaud’s killing, there are systems around us that is built to try to intimidate us. Trying to keep us quiet. The system is stacked against us, I get it. I am mad... But sometimes getting mad is the best thing we can do, get mad and speak up, get mad and educate your child, get mad and purchase a home, get mad and get out, get mad and be successful. Success is the best revenge.
And to Ahmaud Arbery and his family. I’m sorry you have to go through this. No parents should have to bury their kids, and especially the way it happened. We can’t let is death be in vain, if this is what will spark us to get mad and be in a position to win and change the system. Let’s do what we have to do.
Let’s truly flip this world upside down.